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tv   Full Measure With Sharyl Attkisson  CBS  December 20, 2015 10:00am-10:30am CST

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sharyl: hello, i'm sharyl attkisson. welcome to "full measure." today, an unbelievable story that sounds more like episode of "breaking bad" than real life. it takes place at a federal agency under the commerc departrtnt you probably neveve heard of -- the national institute of standards and technology or nist. next year's budget will be somewhere around $1 billion tax dollars. by day, nist literally sets industry standards forng machines to computer security. but it's what was going on there at night and how they're allegedly misleading congress that will have you wonderingng about their r n standards. it was nist, the national institute of standards and technology, th helped solve one of the most notorious crim of the 20th century -- the kidnapping and mururr of charles lindbebeh's son. >> the victim of as cruel and fiendish a crime.. the kidnapapr wore heavy woolen socks to disguise his footprints, but the search goes
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hauptmann was convictein the case aer a ransom note was analyzed by an expert provid by nist, known back then as the nanaonal bureau of standards. >> most people think of it as a b b it's true simple mission is to enable innovation. sharyl: today, the 3,000 scientists at nist establish all kinds of industry stanrds and measurements. and the agency pretty much flew quietly under the federal radar until last july when an explosion rocked the special projects buiing. inside, firefighte found this the only thing more startling than a meth lab in the middle of a a deral agency is whit -- nist police lieutenant christopher bartley. he was found on site with burned arms and singed hair. officer jones is an nist police officer who worked with bartley. he asked us not to use his real name. when you heard about the meth lab incident, what was the reaction that you had and other people on thforce?
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all over the place, from like, he finally did something, to you don't believe it, to you expect him to do other things, not actually make meth and blow up a lab. sharyl: as a member of congress, what did you first think when you heard that there was a meth lab operating at a federal agency? rep. smith: i think my first reaction was total disbelief; you just can't believe this kind of thing would really happen in the real world. it was like it was halloween or something. sharyl: congressman lamar smith heads the house science, space, and technology committee. hehe says while investigating the meth lab case, his office uncovered an allegeg culture of wastst fraud, abuse, and misconduduct at nist police services. "for example," smith wrote in a leletter to nist, "officerartley y d sexual relations th other nist employees on agency property, in vehicles owned by the government, while on official duty." whistleblowers also provided evidence of alleged, rampant overtimemeraud on the police force for yeyes that included bartley.
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individual put in for something like 80 hours of overtime over a two-week perio in addition to his regular hours, that just didn't add up. sharyl: smith says the blame may lie with nist management. he wrote, "it appears agency officials were aware of mr. bartley's conduct but failed to take appropriate disciplinary actions and even selected him as interim chief of police.e. the question is -- why? rep. smith: that individual should not have been there, should not have been hired, should not have been promoted, and that led, unfortunately, to the result and, as incredible as it may souound, that you have a police officer normally in charge of enforcing laws, actually breaking laws. sharyl: there's no evidence anyone knew specifically about bartley's meth lab. but officer jojos says senior managers knew well of his other alleged misconduct, including sexual escapades and overt fraud yet promoted him anyway. bartley's advocates reportedly included nist emergency services chief mark spurrier and, above acilities steve
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police union. officer jones: about the overtime, about the inappropriate behavior. sharyl: and the police union told him this before bartley was appointed as police chief? officer jones: yes, and the members of t t police union have actually met with thath person about 18 times prior to bartley taking over. sharyl: spurrierwho oversees the nist police force and also allegedldlbacked bartley's promotion, has his own checkered past. before nist, he was the number two in charge of law enforcement athe national oceanic and atmospheric administration. there, his office gogocaught imimoperly shredding documents during a probe into corruption. spurrier was removed from hiss position, yet then hired to head emergency services at nist as allegations of waste and misconduct grew. salber, spurrier, and e head of nist declined our interview requests. a spokesman defendedpurrier's hiring saying he has appropriate
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duties effectively. the spokesman also said, "nist takes seriously all allegations appropriate disciplinaryction when warranted by the evidence." and nist says the allegations congressman smith has asked about are unfounded. but this month, smith red off a new letter accusing nist of repeatedly providing him false and misleading information aboutut the whole scandal.l. rep. smith: so it seems to u that there is a major mismanagement problem at the nist police force. sharyl: another area sure to outrage e xpayers is money spent on, of all things, an emergency response team at the science agency. was that a relatively exnsive proposition? officer jones: yeah, because theyeyould just buy things, you know, items that weren't being needed. we had those ballistic shields with the headlights on it and the window -- the camouflage suit that looks like leaves and grass that the snipers put over themselves. sharar: did you ever have e e
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officer jones: no, my own personal opinion and most of the department's was that there was no need for an emergency response team at nist. sharyl: a sw team that was all essed up with no plala to go. did they ever have to respond to any events? officer jones: we had no events to respond. sharyl: and to top ioff, police gear worth thousands of dollars may have disappeared. of where this stuff is. sharyl: they're just missing? officer jones: they're missing. sharyl: bartley pled guilty in the meth case and faces up to 20 years in prison. and smith is left trying to find out why a federal agenen that made its name solving crime didn't sniff out a meth lab under its own nose. what does it say in general to the puic that there is a federal agency out there they obably never heard o othat had this sort of thing going on? rep. smith: the american tax payer is going to say, "what are you doing with my hard-earne tax dolls? it's supposed to be going to legitimate research, not to cooking meth in an illegal lab that we found out about only because there was an
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sharyl:fficer bartley d dlined our interview request. nist claims there was no overtime abuse and no missing police equipment. congressman smith says nist has fa iled to disclose required documents and is improperly trying to keep whistleblowers from providing more information. we'll keep on top of this story. still ahead on "full measure," a look at the dark side of gaming. pranks that have turned into
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online and personal safety. sharyl: there is a sinister movememe crossing fromhe make-believe world of video gaming into the real it's dangerous prank played that involves real swat teams and real guns. but that's not the only threat. jon humbert of our sinclair station komo reports on "gamergate" and the dark side of online gaming. jon: you've donit. i've done it. >> everyone can game now. it's not an exclusive jon: israel galvez doesn't feel ch of a gaming stigma anymore. israel: hey, everyone games now. we're not all the basement dwellers living in our mom's basement. jon: but that passion to play has also put galvez in a dangerous place. israel: thth're basically domestic terrorists, especially when they jon: galvez is a prolific poster on twitter. he writes about the gaming industry and calls for change, urging game-makers to focus less on gender stereotypes and become
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earlier thisear, galvez noticed internet forum posts suggesting retaliation against him for those reform-minded views. israel: they posted mymy informrmion, my wife'ss information, my father's information. jon: it's called "doxxing," publishing "dox" about a person in the hopes that someone else uses the information to harass and intimidate. galvez says unknown people pranked him by sending religious books, mormon missionaries, pizzas, and more to his house. after reading the escalating tone in the postsgalvez went to sergeant jon buss with the enumclaw police. he feared someone would send in a hoax threat. sgt. buss: normally something like that we would take very seriously. jon: it's called swatting -- a prank call that gets police or emergency officials to your doorstep. sure enough, pice got an untraceable anonymoutip -- totatay false -- that alleled galvez was ready to unleash hell, with pipe bombs and a new gun. israel: then the next thing i know, at 11:50 p.m., i had five enumclaw police officers at my door. jon: no harm that night because galvez had warned police.
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former house of a gaming critic was swatted after herwas doed online. stunning, perhaps,o think all this harasasent and danger is happening because of video games. >> never in a million years. jon: welcome to the world of gamergate -- a growing online movement to ake up the world of videogames. allum: they primarily see it as a campaign for ethics in games journalism. jon: allum bokhari writes about this battle for hearts, minds, and controllers. bokhari and gagaez say gamergate exploded last summmmer after traditional gamers attacked writers and commentators who were calling for serious reform. saying the time was over for sophomoric and demeaning portrayals of wowomen and that ultra-violence kept games from becoming more respected. ga galvez says it's a cultural shift th some male gamers cannot accept. israel: they're bitter towards feminists. there's lots of men's s ghts activists involved. jon: yet bokhari calls those aggressive voices the minority. for him, gamergate is about exposing another big
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allum: the close connection between developers and games journalists. jon: he says the true gamergaters expose freebies, lavish parties, and undisclosed friendships between the industry and the critics. they want better. they also don't want strictions on games s r allum: it's about journalist ethics. it's about anti-censorship. it's about anti-collusion. jon: galvez disagrees, saying metastisized into a crusade against anyone whohoants a ra israel: if gamergate was really don't think we would be seeing stalking, all the death threats, all the rape threats. activists have been targets of doxxing and threats, too. the problem -- the dark side of the web, where serious threats can come from out of nowhere. people are playing both sides because they know there's a divide there. jon: a cultural divide over
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end up on your doorstep. swatting has been tough for law enforcement to handle no matter where it cos from. in july, the department of justice told a popular cyber brought her -- blogger that his swatter pled guilty in federal court but he was wadded in 2013. slow-moving justice for a fast-moving controversy. in seattle, for "fl measure," i'm jon humbert. sharyl: still ahead on "full measure" -- e"if you thought the health care mess wasn't bad enough. families lucky enough to still have goohealth care plans through work could soon face a new obamacare tax.
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shsryl: the cadillac tax has nothing to do with cars. it's a tax that's coming on health insurance plans that the government decides are too good. this week, democrats and republicans joined to postpone the tax, which was supposed to raise $9 billion under
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we looked into why it'so unpopular. katie riess is part of diminishing crowd these days. the married mother of 2 likes her health care e an. she says her husband's union contract provides excellent coverage for their whole family. katie: it's pretty affordable for us. my husband's employer pays for most of it and it's a good plan. sharyl: but according to thele care act, it's too good. and by the time 3-year-old spencer walks into kindergarten, the e ess family and millions of families like them will be hit with the so-called obamacare cadillac tax. katie: yes, too much coverage, so you are going to get taxed on it. that doesn't equate. to work very well and it certainly doesn't seem fair. sharyl: for the first time in our history, americans will have their health care taxed as income. policies valued at more than
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$27,500 for a family will be hit with a tax on 40% of the overage. according to a study by the kaiser foundation, that will affect 1 in 4 employee plans in the short term and all plans within a decade.e. for the average united auto workers union employee, that means $2,000 a year in extra taxes. the cadillac tax is so universally unpopular among union workers, democrats, republicans, businesses it's actually led to something rarely seen in washington -- bipartisanship. lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are lining up to repeal it. rep. guinta: there are so many groups, both on the republican and democrat side, that oppose it. s affects millions and millions of middle classuntry. the right thing for the presididt to do is acknowleded that it'bad public policy within the affordable care act, that we have to repeal it. sharyl: but the obama adminiration is digginin its
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it insists the cadillac tax will lolor healthcare costs b b forcing insurers to drop policies offering so much coverage. it also says as companies take away the high quality, taxax plans, t ty'll make up forort by paying workersrsigher wages -- something critics doubt. it's a sharp turn from 2008, when then-presidential candidate obama was against a cadillac it had been proposos by his republican opponent. sen. obama: john mccain calls these plans cadillac plans. and in some cases, a corporate ceo may be getting too gd of a deal. but what if you are a line worker makinina car like the cadillac? what if you are one of the steel workers, working right here in newport news? and you have given up wage increases for better health care. well, senator mccain believes you should pay higher taxes too. the bottom linin the better your health c ce plan, the harder you
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higher taxes you'll pay under john mccain's plan. sharyl: the government accountability office estimates the cadillac tax will bring in more than $87 billion over 10 years and help pay for the government's dramatic expansion of medicaid and other subsidies under obamacare. $20,000 would come from the riess family. katie: it doesn't seem fair that they tax you if you have a great plan. there has to be a better way. there really does. sh budget deal, the cadillae tax will now be postponed until 2020. . the president supports the tax, but the white house has indicated it could live with delaying it. joining us is analyst robert laszewski, head of health policy and strategy associates and a frequent contributor here on "full measure." a lot of people probably think it is getting put off until 2020, i don't have anything to
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rort: the probleleis that congress has not taken the uncertainty away. employers see this tax looming. the got to have their plans budgeted and ruced in cost order to not have to pay this tax. congress cut this tataand two her tataxes out of obamacare. the congress took $30 billion out of the funding for obamacare, but they did not touch any of the obamacare entitlements. such as the medicaid expansion and insurance subsidies. ironically, the republicans have taken $30 billion out of obamacare, have not cut the entitlements, and really have not taken the uncertainty away. they have only suspended this for a couple of f ars. sharyl: the two problems. the tax is still coming and that secondly, 've got the fact that they do not have the income from these postponed taxes to support obamacare. robert: that's right. a lot of people are shaking what have we really accomplished?
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sharyl: let's look at the co-ops. another facet of this. the co-ops were nonprofits started with tax dollars with the idea of providing more competition in the marketplace and they are going bankrupt left and right. what is the status? robert: half of them have already failed and gone bankrupt and out of business. the associated press just did a report on the remaining co-ops. all of them are losing m@ney. the main one is now having major losses. the average loss for each of the remaining co-ops is about $20 million for 2015. they are in prprty tough shape. sharyl: in just a few phrases, does this mean obamacare is in trouble or does it just limp along? robert: obamacare is limping along. it is going to have to be fixed. the plans still have deductibles that are too high. the coress cut the revenue for
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they did not fix anything. it is all part of limping along. sharyl: thanks for the update. robert laszewski. still ahead on "full measure," we chase taxpayer waste around the world. this time in londodo where construction of this fancy new
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we will tell you the cost sharyl: in this week's "follow the money," a congressional hearing into tens of millions of tax dollars unaccounted for in building a new u.s. embassy in lond. this is what the billion-dollar u.s. embassy will look like when it's finished in 2017. the inspector general l found the state department can'account for $42 million dollars. he also o id the agency violated the law by starting construction in 2013 without safety tests on materials. but in an exchange that seemed like the theatre of the absurd, state department official lydia muniz insisted construction hadn't really started, despite what photos seem to show. rep. chaffetz: we're supposed to believe that that'not consnsuction? to slide number two. that to me seems like an awfulul lot of work going on and a lot of construction and you don't believe that that's -- you telling us that's not
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ms. muniz: i agree it is an awful lot of work. but under the definition that we use and have used for a lot of years with diplomatic security, we do site pilings stabilize the -- to stabilize the earth, the soil, and the site before we come out of the ground. sharyl: inspector general steve linick agreed with chairman of the house oversight commtee jason chaffetz. rep. chaffetz: mr. linick, is that construction? mr. linick: to m that does look#like construction. from the point of view of the report, it is irrelevant. theepartment's on policy says you can't even award a contrac prior to certification. sharyl: linick says if the embassy had failed safety tests after so much construction, it could have cost taxpayer millions to correct. ththe's a long history of wasted
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construction in the soviet union ground to a halt when it was discovered the soviet-madedeteel beams were embmbded with kgb spy equipment. the bugged u.s. embassy remained empty for 15ears, taken apart, brick by brick, then rebuilt using american materials at a taxpayer cost of hundreds of millions of dollars. next week on "full measure" -- it's almost the end of 2015, but we have our own countdown list of top taxpayer waste stories that we've covered. including this -- >> the marine commander, the general on the ground running the surge said, "i don't want it, i don't need it, don't build it." and two other generals above him said the same thing. "don't build it, we don't need it. we already have a headquarters. it's a waste of uoney." sharyl: our countdown on the next esode of "full measure." thank you for watching. i'm sharyl attkisson. searching for more stories that
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look at the people and events that shape our community.this is iowa in focus.the campaign that's suing their national committee -- aaer having to fire a staffer.and we sit down with terry branstad the day after he becomes the longest serving governor in united states history. welcome to iowa in focus -- where we're giving context to
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